Lifting with MS Lifting with MS

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Thread: Lifting with MS

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2020
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    5

    Default Lifting with MS

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    Hi Rip,
    I've been doing the program for six weeks and I'm so glad I started. I've gained 17 pounds, and almost doubled my squat already.
    I feel like my girlfriend would greatly benefit from the program. She is chronically ill, and we have just found out that it's because she has MS (she is 27 by the way). She has started getting very tired, and walking is becoming difficult, so she is getting a wheelchair. I have mentioned your program to keep her strength up as long as possible, though she has Ehlers Danlos Syndrome too so squatting is very hard (her knees dislocate around the necessary angle for a correct depth squat). What adaptations could I make to the program to enable her to do it?

    Thanks,
    Damon

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    North Texas
    Posts
    43,573

    Default

    It can be done, but this is a job for a very good coach, in person, not an internet post or an online consultant.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Manhattan Beach, CA
    Posts
    313

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Rippetoe View Post
    It can be done, but this is a job for a very good coach, in person, not an internet post or an online consultant.
    True on several levels. It sounds like your girlfriend has a fairly virulent form of the disease if she's going immediately from diagnosis to wheelchair. If she has the relapsing/remitting type of MS, then training can potentially be very helpful and during her remissions, she should train at a higher level than during relapses with good technique, good programming, etc.

    If she has primary progressive MS (which seems possible given what little I know of her actual history) then the purpose of a VERY good coach will be to assess her level of motivation and what's possible vs what's a pipe dream. I say this for a simple reason. The purpose of training for her under these circumstances will be to make her life better not worse. To simply make her work her ass off without reasonable hope for improvement (unless the effort itself is what makes her life more meaningful) would be without tangible benefit. Her coach needs to be part instructor and part shrink by getting into her head and assessing what her real needs and aspirations are. They may be very different from yours as her boyfriend.

    This probably sounds more touchy feely than I like to be but this will be a major challenge. If you go with her to her sessions, shut up and let her do all the talking.

    Good luck. Prayers going your way.

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